14 MARCH 2015 Claims Magazine PropertyCasualty360.com
vide a completed complaint known as an
Identity Theft Affidavit.
Both reports may be needed as the various credit issues are resolved.
Step 2: Alert each of the credit reporting companies: Equifax, Experian and
TransUnion and explain that the child is
a minor. Documentation will be required.
Request a copy of any information they
have regarding credit issuers or collection
agencies that were contacted by the fraud-
ster. Contact each company and explain
that the victim is a minor. They may request
a copy of the police report that was filed.
Ask the credit reporting companies that
they remove all accounts, inquiries and collection notices from the child’s credit file.
Step 3: Place an initial fraud alert on
the child’s record with one of the reporting
agencies. When an alert is placed with one
company, the entity will notify the other
two. A fraud alert advises any creditor that
they need to verify an individual’s identity
before extending any credit. When they
find out that a minor is involved, they usu-
ally will not extend credit to the individual
making the request.
Another option is to place a credit freeze
on the child’s account so creditors cannot
get a copy of the credit report. This makes
it more difficult for the thief to open new
accounts. It will be important to lift the
freeze before the child applies for any student loans, jobs or bank accounts.
Step 4: Monitor the child’s credit report
to see if any new accounts were opened. If
a child has bank accounts, monitor those
to make sure no funds were dispersed and
that it is flagged as being compromised by
5 If a child’s identity is stolen, the So- cial Security Administration may assign him or her a new number,
but usually only if the child is in grave
danger, is being harassed or abused when
using the original number, or if it is being
used illegally. Getting a new number won’t
solve all of the problems or give a child a
fresh start, but it will make it easier to limit
fraud for the new number.
Parents should also watch their medical bills to ensure that the number has not
been used to secure services from medical
providers that are not for the child. If there
is an invoice for unauthorized services,
contact the medical provider immediately,
get a copy of the medical records and ask
the provider to separate any charges for
the child from the rest of the family’s.
If the imposter has used the child’s social security number to secure employment, contact the Social Security Administration and request a copy of the “child’s
work statement — form 7040.” This identi-fies all of the places the child has “worked”
and will need to be amended.
The bottom line is that a child’s identity
needs to guarded even more carefully than
an adult’s because fraudsters know that it is
highly unlikely that the crime will be noticed for an extended period of time. Taking the steps early to prevent fraud will go
a long way towards averting years of credit
damage for a child.
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